Michael Vick named starting quarterback for Eagles

2:51 PM, Aug 20, 2013   |    comments
Michael Vick has looked sharp in the first two preseason games for the Philadelphia Eagles. (Photo: Howard Smith, USA TODAY Sports)
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PHILADELPHIA - Michael Vick has won the competition to be the starting quarterbackfor the season, Eagles coach Chip Kelly announced this morning.

Kelly was expected to name a starter for the preseason game against Jacksonville. Instead, he decided to name one for the season, saying that Vick beat out Nick Foles and rookie Matt Barkley for the job. He said he met with the quarterbacks this morning and told them of his decision.

"It's not a one-game trial basis," Kelly said. "I would think it was a thorough evaluation ... We felt like we had a good amount of tape, us seeing them on the field and us seeing them in a lot of different situations. We wanted to put a guy in place - if we could - in enough time to prepare us for the season."

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Vick was clearly the better quarterback during the two preseason games. He completed 13 of 15 passes for 199 yards and a touchdown. One of Vick's incompletions was on a desperation heave at the end of the first half last Thursday that was intercepted.

Foles went 11-for-14 for 96 yards, but threw an interception and lost a fumble.

"I think we all learned from this group that we've got two guys, maybe even three guys who can play in this league," Kelly said. "It was a healthy competition. I think they both made each other better.

"Mike is ahead, but Nick made it very tough on him."

Throughout the spring organized team activities and training camp, Vick and Foles split the first-team snaps evenly. Barkley, meanwhile, got all of his reps with the third team.

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But now that Vick is the starter, he'll get the bulk of the first-team snaps beginning today in practice. He'll also play the entire first half and perhaps into the third quarter against Jacksonville on Saturday in the third preseason game, which is often considered the dress rehearsal for the regular season.

Vick is entering his 12th season, but this was his first time competing for a starting job in his NFL career. The Eagles reworked his contract, re-signing him to a one-year deal. He got a $3.5 million bonus for being on the roster in March. He'll get another $3.5 million for being on the roster for the start of the season and he'll have a chance to earn another $3 million in incentives.

Foles, in his second season, started six games in place of Vick last season while Vick was out with a concussion.

Martin Frank writes for the News Journal in Wilmingon, Del.

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